Testimony Before the U.S. House Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations
Chairman Stearns, Ranking Member DeGette and Members of the Subcommittee, I appreciate the opportunity to be here today to testify on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) regulatory process.
Few of the regulations that gave us huge gains in public health were uncontroversial at the time they were developed. Most major rules have been adopted amidst claims that they would be bad for the economy and bad for employment.
In contrast to doomsday predictions, history has shown, again and again, that we can clean up pollution, create jobs, and grow our economy all at the same time. Over the same 40 years since the Clean Air Act was passed, the Gross Domestic Product of the United States grew by more than 200 percent.
Some would have us believe that “job killing” describes EPA’s regulations. It is misleading to say that enforcement of our nation’s environmental laws is bad for the economy and employment. It isn’t.
Families should never have to choose between a job and a healthy environment. They are entitled to both.
We must regulate sensibly - in a manner that does not create undue burdens and that carefully considers both the benefits and the costs. However, in doing so, we must not lose sight of the reasons for implementation of environmental regulations: These regulations are necessary to ensure that Americans have clean air to breathe and clean water to drink. Americans are no less entitled to a safe, clean environment during difficult economic times than they are in a more prosperous economy.